Absolutely incompetent...not so sure "it gets better". - page 4

Just finished my last 12 hr shift this week...I'm sleep deprived and I've been bouncing around between Med Surg and ICU. A brief background: I graduated in 2010 and it took me 9 months to land this... Read More

  1. by   CamillusRN
    Quote from CaffeinePOstat
    My preceptor is nice but I fear disappointing her by being incompetent. So like the previous poster, I hope it gets better and what's the best way to turn a bad experience into a good one? I haven't had one yet but I am just anticipating that day....
    As a current preceptor-in-training, I try to put myself in the shoes of other recent grads and remember the feelings of being overwhelmed and incompetent. Here's what I tell them: Find out what went wrong, what you need to do to prevent it from happening again, and move forward from there. Turn "bad" experiences into teaching moments, and the only truly bad experience you'll ever have is the one you can't walk away from. That truly bad experience will never happen if you learn from the teaching moments and focus on the lesson, not the mistake.

    I try to never belittle the new nurses I'm supervising, but you can be your own worst enemy by hanging on to past mistakes and letting them guide your experience. Each shift is full of new mistakes just waiting to become teaching moments - without them we would never learn.
  2. by   whatsmyusername_RN
    I hope it will get better...because I'm feeling pretty incompetent today
  3. by   vnguyen3
    It certainly does get better. I've reached a year and 2 months last week, my confident level is a lot better than it was a year ago, and so will yours (to whom if may applies). After a while, you get used to giving report to certain people. For example, Nurse A wants to know the basic, while Nurse B wants to know irrelevant things like, what toe nail polish is the patient wearing . Trust me you'll learn to pick them out real quick. For information regarding patients plan of care: read the doctors note.
  4. by   opossum
    Original poster here....it's been 4 years since I wrote that post. And I can say with confidence that it DOES get better. It gets easier. I've learned to accept that I will never be perfect, nor should I be: if that were the case, I would never learn. Which would be calamitous for a nurse, right?

    I'm still in ICU, but at a different hospital. I love ICU - I've learned what my strengths and weaknesses are. I know what I don't know and I'm never afraid to ask, no matter how "stupid" I feel.

    I think it gets better because confidence in my own competencies, as well as a trusty team of other nurses around me continues to help me provide great care.

    Thanks, everyone, for all the wise words!